Written by Nate Dunlevy | 01 January 2012

18to88.com will continue to exist for reference purposes, but for new material please go to



no comments

Written by Nate Dunlevy | 31 December 2011

Ani G won the 18to88 Fantasy League this year. Here is his victory speech.

So….what does it take to win a Fantasy Football Championship?  Well, for me it took 61 moves, 19 waiver wire acquisitions, 2 trades, and….. LUCK…. of course.  No, not Andrew, I’m actually talking about good fortune/big break/fortunateness/godsend, that kind of Luck.

Now…It is funny how my Luck and that Luck went hand in hand.  If you followed my fantasy team (which you didn’t) you would know that with my first pick in this year’s FFB draft I took Manning.  I had no choice, he was right there waiting for me the whole time.  O, I knew he had some issues with his neck (who needs a neck by the way if you have a Laser Rocket Arm) but I also knew that the Colts would never ever downplay his injury.  They never do J.  So I took him and BAAAMMM here I am, season all ready to go, with no Rocked Laser Arm in my starting lineup and a Surgery Laser Operated Neck on my bench.  Lucky Me and My Colts.

With every loss my Colts assembled less Lucky I felt and the closer to Luck…yep that one…they got.   Lucky for me (after getting by with Kerry Collins (ouch ) and Andy Dalton for a few weeks ) Rock Your Fantasy World traded me Vick, which as it turns out didn’t have much of a Lucky season himself.  A few injuries here and there to Mr. Mike and I’m in need of another QB.  But again, Lucky for me Carson Palmer decided to head to Oakland out of retirement, so by this point I was set.  Right! Lucky Me!

Anyhow, after trading for (Thanks  Jason J)  and than dropping CJ Spiller to make roster room, Fred Jackson gets hurt and CJ is racking up yards and TDs for Forever Delone ( I fantasy football hate youJ).  Combine this with injuries to Josehp Addai, Felix Jonex, Anquan Boldin, Rey Lewis, and having to let go of Jason Babin, and the only thing you can say is …Lucky ME!

But in the end thanks to Donald Brown, Antonio Brown, AJ Green, Jimmy Graham, Tamba Hali, Jason Pierr-Paul, a few others, and yes, Vick,  I really ended up feeling Lucky.  Lucky to be the last one standing after a crazy, crazy season.  In the end all the emotions (contemplations, worries, fears, satisfactions) I went through were again worth it.  I can’t help but wonder if, after this Football Season is over (2-14 or 3-13), the Colts and we as Colts fans will feel the same way.  Luck or no Luck I think we all will.

PS:  I don’t mean to brag but this is the second year in a row that I won the Championship.  Lucky for you all I subscribe to the “Once is a fluke, twice is a coincidence, three times is a trend” school of thought.  So I’m going to go ahead and wait until I win the third one before I start coming across as conceited J.  By the way, after this year’s win, Nate has agreed to start paying me to professionally play in next year’s and first ever Colts Authority Fantasy Football League.  Just FYI. J

Thanks for a great season and can’t wait for Colts Authority.

Go Colts


no comments

Written by Nate Dunlevy | 31 December 2011

Andrew Aziz of Everythng Colts breaks down tomorrow's game


What the Colts Need to Do to Win

On offense, the Colts need to go pass heavy. Dan Orlovsky is gaining more confidence as the weeks go on. He had a great 2nd half last game, and let's hope that carries over to this game. To beat this Jacksonville pass defense, you going to have to be aggressive. You can't be too conservative, which means that don't go for the 5 yard pass each time. The Colts should take a lot of shots down the field as Rashean Mathis is out for the year, and Dwight Lowery is probably not going to play. The Colts have great deep threats in Pierre Garcon, Reggie Wayne and even Jacob Tamme can be useful down the field. They have to take shots, but they have to choose them wisely. They can't just constantly take shots down the field. They have to run the ball and throw some short passes; this will set up the long ball perfectly as they will play short, not deep. This need to take at least 5 shots down the field, or throw 5 25+ yard passes. Now, when running the ball, they should tend to run it out of shotgun or have a fullback in front of the running back. They let Donald Brown or Joe Addai run against these linebackers without full back help, the Jaguars have 3 very good linebackers in Smith, Posluszny and Session (former Colt). They need a lead blocker. In a shotgun situation, the draw itself should make the linebackers scatter and leave only 1 linebacker in the box. Don't make the playcalling obvious. Also, short passes on first down should be good, so it makes 2nd and 3rd down easier to convert, and if you get pretty good yardage, you can afford a deep shot, and like I said, the Colts need to take deep shots vs the Jags.

no comments


Written by Nate Dunlevy | 30 December 2011

6 Things to Watch For in Sunday's Colts Jaguars Game

I never get tired of watching this.

Last week the Colts toppled the Texans and turned an otherwise forgettable week 17 game into one of the most important games in franchise history. Or something like that. Here's what to watch for this week:

1. Watch for hyperbole. Look, if Andrew Luck turns out to be Peyton Manning, Part Deux, then yes, this game is a franchise changer. However, there's a solid chance he won't be. He could be a run of the mill Pro-Bowl QB. That would be great and all, but those come along far more often than "once a generation". With talking heads yapping about whether the Colts should tank, the point needs to be made that Indy has the #2 at worst, and that pick may also be worth a hefty haul. Let's all just calm down a bit. This is an interesting game, but hardly one that will forever curse or bless the Colts future for a thousand generations.

no comments


Written by Nate Dunlevy | 29 December 2011

In a few days, ColtsAuthority.com will launch.

Here's what 18to88.com readers need to know:

1. The URL 18to88.com will redirect to ColtsAuthority.com. In other words, you don't need to do anything to find me. Just come to 18to88.com.

2. All existing articles on 18to88.com will still exist. We are still working out the technical details, but nothing from here will 'vanish'.

3. For the time being, I will keep my 18to88 Twitter handle. I'll still be taking and answering email at [email protected]

4. We hope to launch January 1st, but we want to make sure the site is 100% ready to go. Because this site will redirect, just keep coming here. You'll know it when you see it.

5. I will be writing a regular Monday and Friday column. I will also weigh in whenever anything significant happens. I'm not going anywhere. Most of you are aware that my primary focus has been Mondays and Fridays all season. Eyes in the Backfield WILL be back in 2012 in some form (hopefully 18 points long!).

6. Colts Authority will be a much more 'full service' site than 18to88.com was. Our goal is to be a one-stop shop for news, analysis, film work, fan posts, community...everything.

7. In a few weeks, work will begin on the Marvin Harrison Project. I have a good team assembled, and in the coming days we'll be tackling the important job of making sure everyone understands exactly how great Harrison was. So, if you miss my daily posting, just remember that we all have to sacrifice something for Marv's sake. I can't write another book if I'm too buried blogging every day.

8. This doesn't really fit here, but I will be in Winona Lake, IN (Warsaw) next Saturday the 7th at the Grace College basketball game. I'll be signing Invincible, Indiana and Blue Blood. Books will be on sale if you don't have one already.

It's bitter-sweet coming to the end of this blog, and I thank all of you for your passion and encouragement. This is a major step forward for Colts fans and should lead to much better coverage of the team. So for now, keep typing in 18to88.com and you won't miss a thing!

no comments

Written by Nate Dunlevy | 29 December 2011

This is the definitive post with all your links to purchase Invincible, Indiana.

Purchase Invincible from Madison House Publishing. (With signature personalization)

Purchase Invincible, Indiana together with Blue Blood.

Purchase Invincible from Amazon.com.

Purchase Invincible for the Kindle.

Purchase Invincible for the Nook.

Purchase Invicible for all other e-formats.

NEW! Invincible, Indiana is availble through Books.

NEW! Invincible, Indiana is available at BN.com

Purchase Invincible at a store:

List of signings and appearances:

  • January 7 at Grace College in Winona Lake, IN.
  • Signing in Fort Wayne, December 3. Event time is 5-6:30 PM. At Buckets 6282 W Jefferson Blvd
  •  Book Release Party. Indianapolis Colts Grille 6-7:30 PM. Monday, November 14. 10% off your meal with a purchase of the book!


Summary of Invincible, Indiana

Dale Cooper arrived in tiny Invincible, Indiana determined to coach his way to a better job. He never bargained for a clueless principal, a bitter star, a racist point guard, and a town fiercely proud of 49 consecutive seasons of finishing exactly .500. When it becomes apparent to Dale that neither the town nor his players have any interest in winning, he devises a way to turn everyone's expectations upside down. His gambit forces Invincible to strive for greatness if only to keep their dreams of mediocrity alive.

Set in 1996-1997, Invincible, Indiana explores the myths and motivations that led to the demise of the 'single class tournament' that was the bedrock of Indiana mythology. Both funny and heartbreakingly serious, Invincible, Indiana unpacks the core of the Hoosier state's love affair with basketball. Invincible, Indiana will make you laugh, cry, and cheer, but most of all it will make you rethink everything you thought you knew about the hysteria that was basketball in Indiana.

Author Nate Dunlevy is already one of the most popular voices in Indiana sports coverage. His first book, Blue Blood: Tales of Glory of the Indianapolis Colts, explored the fragile history of the Colts as they fought for a place at the table and struggled to overcome the basketball bias inherent in Indiana. Now he takes on the traumatic final days of one class basketball, using the travails of fictional Invincible, Indiana to consider questions of greatness, fate, and the full court press.

Written by Nate Dunlevy | 28 December 2011

A hearty congratulations to the winners of the 18to88.com fantasy leagues this year.

In the big league, the top three all get prizes.

The big winner was Ani Guri's "3T Shirts". He'll be going to a preseason game with me next year. He can also post anything he wants here on 18to88 (provided he does it this week!).

My good friend and yours Mingjian Chen delightfully shattered literally dozens of stereotypes with her excellent squat the "Goddammit Donalds". She was the top overall scoring team for the year and wins an "I hate the New England Patriots" Tshirt, which I know she will wear with glee.

3rd place wins a copy of Blue Blood or Invincible, Indiana or the Super Bowl XLI program (winner's choice). Travis will take home that prize for his squad "NFL Trustee".

All three winners can contact me to receive their prizes.

In the B league (co-sponsored by NJFFL), Tom Gower's "1941 Orange Bowl Loser" took home the crown.

In the second B league, I was defeated in the championship game by Scott of the "Lafyette Smells".

There are no prizes in the B leagues, just a recognition of a job well done. With Colts Authority launching in the next week or so, I don't know what the future is of the 18to88 league, but I expect it will be back in some form next year.

Congrats to all the winners.

no comments

Written by Nate Dunlevy | 27 December 2011

This landed in my inbox last week and it cracked me up. Enjoy.

An Open Letter to Colts Nation

There’s no getting around it.

It’s my fault.

Clearly, indisputably, my fault.

Forget Manning’s neck injury.  Forget the subsequent revolving door at QB.  Forget the injuries to Dallas Clark, Joe Addai, Drake Nevis, Melvin Bullitt, Gary Brackett, et al.  Forget allowing Clint Session and Kelvin Hayden to sign with other teams.  Forget Anthony Gonzalez’ and Jerry Hughes’ disappearing acts. Forget Jim Caldwell’s elan, Bill Polian’s hubris, Jim Irsay’s inscrutability.

It’s all about me. no comments


Written by Nate Dunlevy | 26 December 2011

I love a good debate.

I love when there are points to be made on both sides, and the dialogue is intense. This season, one of the most hotly debated topics among Colts writers (though not Colts fans) is whether or not Bill and Chris Polian should be brought back in 2012.

I've made my position clear: firing them would be the biggest mistake the Colts could make.

However, despite my disagreement with the 'Fire Polian' crowd, what has disappointed me most about the discussion is what a terrible job they have done making their case. Just last week Bob Kravitz tried to lay out an argument for firing Polian that failed miserably. His case can be summarized with the following "points":

  • It's "time".
  • The draft
  • Polian's media outbursts are embarrassing
  • Too many voices (despite complaining earlier that the public only hears Polian's)
  • A big name coach won't work with Polian.
  • He wants to bring Caldwell back.

So of the six reasons, we have a cliche, a complaint about how Polian deals with the media (legitimate), a contradiction (too many voices), two things that are historically provably false (the draft and Polian can't work with a big time head coach despite the fact that he has his whole career and has never had a conflict with any of his head coaches), and guessing what Polian wants based on his assumption about who Peter King's source is. 

It's a terrible case.

So, in the interest of furthering the debate, allow me to submit a real laundry list of the reasons Bill Polian should be fired. Understand that this isn't my position at all, but these are much more cogent reasons for getting rid of one of the most successful GMs in history than anything his detractors have presented to date.

no comments


Written by Nate Dunlevy | 25 December 2011

A multitude of angels, a band of shepherds, three wise man, two frightened parents, one Baby, one God; some things are worth coming for. 

Throngs of hurting people, a host of angry officials, twelve naive disciples, one Man, one God; some things are worth leaving for. 

Thunder, lightning, a hill of skulls, three trees, two thieves, one Man, one God; some things are worth dying for.

God bless us, every one.



no comments